Straight exposure to objects
Observably, toddlers first learn to say the names of solid objects because of their definite physical appearance. Solids usually do not change in form and size and toddlers can grasp and hold them, thus making it easier for them to identify the items. Hence just by seeing solids, they promptly connect the words that name the objects. On the other hand, non-solids have less defined appearance that it takes toddlers longer time to identify and utter words that relate to such stuff.
As found out by the recent research, toddlers can manage early on to say words like “ball” or “book” because these objects have specific appearance and form. However when they see oats, which is non-solid, they may not be able to immediately say the word that refers to the object. In this case, the study stated, toddlers need to feel the texture of their breakfast food to retain its name in their memory. The learning experience, according to the research, is heightened when toddlers are left alone to themselves so that they can grab their breakfast food with their hands and shove it in their mouths. This first-hand encounter with non-solids is said to be helpful in boosting the children’s inquisitive nature to increase their knowledge and speech abilities.
High chair experience
Putting toddlers in their high chair and allowing them to explore and mess with their food gives them a sense of comfort and security because the chair is a familiar place for them. Since they feel safe, they can be given certain food items such as applesauce, soup or mashed carrots and potatoes. These foodstuffs may form their meal but they must be given freedom to scrutinize each item even if it means they will make a mess in the process. In the study that was conducted by the University of Iowa, the subject toddlers were given freedom to examine the given food substances with their hands. While exploring, the children were told the names of each non-solid substance. It was then that the toddlers understood that the items did not take a particular shape or size, unlike those of solid objects.
Fun learning experience
The University of Iowa researchers pointed out that most children go through rigid learning situations in homes and schools. Parents have the tendency to prevent their toddlers from touching things around the house for fear of breakages or messing up the place. Accordingly, by giving the toddlers a fun learning experience, they start to identify the objects around them more accurately. The researchers emphasized that one of the factors that contributes to a more efficient language learning process among toddlers is the freedom to explore and discover on their own, regardless of the mess they may create.